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"Beyond the Headlines"

Urban Leaders Talk Revitalization, Innovation For Reno

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Alexa Ard
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A group of urban leaders from across the country recently met in Reno to talk innovation and revitalization for the city. It was for the Vanguard Conference hosted by a national nonprofit called Next City. The group was charged with brainstorming inexpensive, quick ideas for promoting the Biggest Little City.

Reno Public Radio’s Michelle Bliss caught up with two of the participants to learn more. She spoke to local historian Alicia Barber and Noah Silverman, co-founder of the Reno Bike Project which promotes a cycling lifestyle.

The Vanguard Conference is hosted each year in a different locale by the national nonprofit Next City, which promotes social, economic, and environmental change to help inspire what it calls "better cities." This year's event was in Reno earlier this month, and the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada partnered with Next City to put on the event.  

Along with offering typical conference activities, like speakers and panels, the Vanguard Conference also recruits dozens of urban planners ("vanguards") from all over the country to visit the host city and offer ideas for promoting regional assets and fostering community engagement. In KUNR's extended interview for Beyond the Headlines, Barber and Silverman share several of the specific ideas that came up for rebranding and redefining downtown Reno. 

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